Definition of chancery in English:



  • 1Law
    (in the UK) the Lord Chancellor's court, a division of the High Court of Justice.

    • ‘This is an appeal by the claimant below, against an order of His Honour made on 12 March 2001 when he was sitting as an additional judge of the Chancery Division of the High Court.’
    • ‘This is an appeal with the permission of the judge against the order of Mr Garnett QC sitting as a Deputy Judge of the High Court of Justice, Chancery Division.’
    • ‘Any person aggrieved by the inclusion of any land by amendment of the register has, by section 14, a right of appeal to the Chancery Division of the High Court.’
    • ‘Secondly, after the Judicature Acts 1873-1875 it was possible for some negligence cases to be assigned to the Chancery Division of the High Court; such cases would be heard without a jury.’
    • ‘Many of the proceedings against former employees were commenced in the Chancery Division of the High Court; but others were commenced in the Queen's Bench Division or in County Courts up and down the country.’
    1. 1.1US A court of law that decides legal cases based on the principle of equity.
      • ‘On November 2, 1998 the chancery action was dismissed ‘without prejudice’.’
      • ‘The fight began in Barbour County, where Dent and the other Democratic candidates quickly filed suit in the Barbour County chancery court at Clayton.’
      • ‘A chancery court valued the dentist's practice at $145,000, goodwill included.’
    2. 1.2historical The court of a bishop's chancellor.
      • ‘I cannot effect the decisions that are made in Rome or in the chanceries of the US bishops too terribly much.’
  • 2British An office attached to an embassy or consulate.

    • ‘In 1979 Stagg came to Bulgaria and spent three years here as a third chancery and information secretary.’
    • ‘The premises of a foreign chancery or embassy are not outside the territory to which the criminal law, otherwise operating in this Territory, applies.’
    • ‘Gift said work began on the repairs and refurbishment of the chancery in September 2003 and on the repairs of the residence in January 2004.’
    • ‘The king possessed the chancery, and then the exchequer too: they were becoming busier and busier.’
    • ‘The design of the proposed development would marry the old building to the new and all entertaining would be done in the chancery.’
    • ‘The police authorities promptly sent plainclothesmen to guard and protect the chancery and the residence of the Indonesian ambassador.’
    • ‘Those outside America, in the chanceries of Europe and beyond, who hoped that this would be a passing phase, like a Florida hurricane that wreaks havoc only to blow over, will instead have to adjust to a different reality.’
    • ‘I went to the opening of the new chancery and was told the upper floors were to be rented out as private offices.’
    • ‘More than 6500 sq m of this stone material has been used in the chancery and the other embassy buildings.’
    • ‘The same evening, our Tunisian friends hosted a reception on the occasion of the opening of their new chancery and residence in Kudan.’
  • 3A public record office.

    • ‘The survival of chancery records from 1199 onwards permits historians to look, for the first time, into the daily routine of the king's government at work.’
    • ‘So there is also a kind of trial by media that is taking place before there is a trial by law: the adversarial culture of American law meets the stonewalling culture of the chancery office.’
    record office, registry, repository, museum, chancery
    View synonyms


Late Middle English: contraction of chancellery.